TAZEWELL, Tenn. (WATE) — Regulations on a cryptocurrency mining operation in Claiborne County will be discussed by county leaders after they recently found out about it, according to a commissioner. Crypto mining is the process of creating new digital currencies on specialized computers that verify blockchain transactions; a blockchain is like a ledger of cryptocurrency transactions to keep them secure.
So, how can a “crypto mine” affect a place like Claiborne County? The process is energy-consuming and large fans used to cool the massive computer servers can be noisy. There’s also not a permitting process specifically tailored for establishing a crypto mine in Claiborne County, which is what leaders will discuss at a planning commission meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 1.
Claiborne County Commissioner Whitt Shuford said this week that the issue is not the fact that the operation came to the area, but that it seemed to have appeared out of the blue and without a permit.
“I’m not going to say that I’m for or against it,” Suford said. “Like I had mentioned earlier that in Claiborne County and as a county commissioner, we encourage all growth in all sectors; industrial, technological, whatever it may be. But the way that we were not notified, it tied our hands with the ability to help them succeed. And any industry in Claiborne county, we want you to succeed but we can’t help you if we don’t know about it.”
The exact location of the crypto mine, which is reportedly located in South Claiborne County, hasn’t yet been shared by parties involved.
Last year, a Bitcoin mining operation near a rural community in Washington County stirred some controversy with residents due to the noise.
WATE 6 On Your Side has been working to get in contact with the company behind the Claiborne County cryptocurrency mining operation.